DT 27044 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27044

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27044

A full review by gnomethang

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BD Rating – Difficulty ****Enjoyment ***

Morning All!. In my befuddled working dream I found this hard going on the day but then wondered what all the fuss was about. A stiffer puzzle for a Saturday but then that is what they should be!.

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1a           Tune ‘Let it Be’ with score showing extremes of emotion (15)
TEMPERAMENTALLY – TEMPER for tune (a tad obscure but think metalwork) then AMEN (‘Let it be’ or ‘So be it’) then TALLY for score/add up.

9a           Suitor turning to a girl possessing sex appeal (9)
LITIGATOR – Someone involved in a law suit as opposed to a swain. An anagram (turning) of TO A GIRL with IT for ‘sex appeal (By George, she’s got it!) inside.

10a         Minor player in film score (not a hit) (5)
EXTRA – Two definitions. A bit part player in a film and a score in cricket that is not taken off the bat e.g. a Leg Bye, overthrow, no ball etc.

11a         It’s glorious heading off in the past (5)
OLDEN – Remove the head from (g)OLDEN,

12a         Department’s holding two-thirds of red glandular product (9)
SECRETION – A SECTION (department) holding two thirds of the letters in RE(d). I spent ages looking for something containing CHER(ry). Simpler than I made it!.

13a         Ridiculous one like that in Irish city (8)
DERISORY – I (one) and SO (like that, (just) SO) inside DERRY – an Irish city.

14a         Mean to finish one set of books first (6)
INTEND – Mean as a verb not an adjective as read in the surface reading. I (for one) and the New Testament (NT – a set of books) before END (finish)

16a         Bring into use from French tactic (6)
DEPLOY – DE (the French word for ‘from’) and PLOY, a tactic or ruse.

18a         Staid set affected repugnance (8)
DISTASTE – An anagram (affected) of STAID SET. A good starter clue.

22a         Step in fat that’s spread widely (6,3)
STRUNG OUT – a RUNG (step in a ladder) inside STOUT for fat.

23a         It’ll secure entrance in flat cheaply (5)
LATCH – Hidden in the last two words (indicated by ‘IN’)

24a         German agreement on port wine (5)
RIOJA – Very chestnutty but another easy starter clue. JA (German for Yes) after (A on B means A after B in an across clue) RIO, a Brazilian port.

25a         Hymn from Southern religious ceremony (9)
SPIRITUAL – A charade of S for Southern, PI for religious/saintly and then RITUAL – a ceremony.

26a         Ah stinger sneaks — could be this! (5,2,3,5)
SNAKE IN THE GRASS – A semi all in one(ish). An anagram (could be) of AH STINGER SNEAKS leads to an animal that might bite you sneakily.



1d           Engineer allowed to overturn car (7)
TELFORD – A reversal of LET(allowed being overturned) and a FORD motor car.

2d           Ring performer — stick at amateur set up (7)
MATADOR – A reversal of ROD (stick), AT (from the clue) and one abbreviation of AM(ateur).

3d           Sporting grandpa goes once in childish event (3-3-5,4)
EGG-AND-SPOON RACE – A nice consistently worded clue. Make an anagram (sporting) of GRANDPA GOES ONCE.

4d           Stalwart is trying to show great skill (8)
ARTISTRY – Took me a while to spot this word hidden (to show) in the first three words.

5d           Idle perhaps keeping new husband to provide fortune (6)
Idle is at the front to hide the required capitalisation. We need ERIC (Idle, the Python) and then insert (keeping) N for New followed by H for Husband.

6d           It’s impossible to predict as votes are not being counted (6,2,7)
THERES NO TELLING – The apostrophe in crossword clues are not shown in the enumeration (so as not to give the game away too quickly).  The cryptic part reads THERE (I)S NO TELLING as votes are not being counted.

7d           Can learn it in new way (7)
LATRINE – A slang word for the toilet is a can (also John and head for Americans). An anagram of LEARN IT (in a new way).

8d           Had strong desire to restore deanery (7)
YEARNED – Another anagram, this time of DEANERY and indicated by ‘to restore’.

15d         Assembly with wealthy old film star (8)
DIET – DIET meaning an assembly or regional government is not common but does turn up from time to time in crosswords. Start with his and then add RICH to get the girl who wanted to be ‘A Lawn’.

16d         Places with little vegetation or leaves (7)
DESERTS – Two definitions, the arid region (noun) and departs (as a verb).

17d         A piece of wood salesman erected as garden feature (7)
PERGOLA – A reversal (erected) of A LOG (a piece of wood) and REP (for salesman – short for representative).

19d         Served up an essential in the form of fruit (7)
SATSUMA – Another reversal clue. This time A MUST (an essential ) and AS (like/in the form of).

20d         Former lover taking hard drinks expires (7)
EXHALES – A charade of EX (the common Crosswordland word for a former lover) then H(ard) and finally ales (drinks)

21d         Detective held by hired thug — a protégé of Corleone? (6)
GODSON – A lovely clue to finish. Place the abbreviation of a Detective Superintendent
inside a GOON (or hired thug). If Don Corleone is the Godfather then his protégé is the GODSON.

Thanks are due to the setter for an entertaining puzzle (in my book), I’ll see you all in a bit when I have sorted out the Christmas Schedule and what it means for me!.


3 comments on “DT 27044

  1. Things are definitely looking up on Saturdays. I enjoyed this one – thanks to the Setter and the Gnome.
    (15d) Wasn’t it Garbo who expressed a desire to be a lawn?

    1. You are right gazza. For me those two are like Steve McQueen and Robert Redford – basically interchangeable in my head!

  2. I agree with gazza, that there have been some good puzzles recently on Saturdays. I also enjoyed this one.
    Thanks to setter, and to gnomethang for the review.

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